Guide to Renewable Energy

From Observatory


Solar panels in Laghouat, Algeria. (Photo credit: Jemo2200, Wikimedia Commons)

This guide explores the promise and perils of renewable energy. Can renewable energy achieve the emissions cuts we need to avoid the worst impacts of the climate crisis? Can we avoid an energy crisis if we abandon fossil fuels? What is the dark truth behind bioenergy? Is hydropower a real or false solution? Is the renewable energy transition succeeding or failing?

Editor: Reynard Loki

When it comes to maintaining energy flows, there is a closing window to avert both climate catastrophe and economic peril.
Europe and Asia demand wood pellets from the United States because it’s a “free pass” on their carbon accounting ledgers. But on the ground, burning biomass contributes to many air pollution impacts.
Despite industry rhetoric, hydropower is high-cost and high-risk. There are better options for a renewable energy future.
To prevent the worst climate scenarios, carbon emissions must be slashed to net-zero by 2050.
Renewable energy isn’t replacing fossil fuel energy—it’s adding to it.
Not only does hydroelectric power fail to prevent catastrophic climate change, but it also renders countries more vulnerable to climate change while emitting significant amounts of methane, one of the worst greenhouse gases.
Several EU nations have embraced biomass electricity, which speeds up carbon emissions, pollution and forest destruction.

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